Online stories - Shaky Averages

He gave them a month to sell the camels before he decided to see how well they were doing.

Sheik YabodiHis sudden announcement that he wanted to see his servants to check on progress did cause quite a lot of them to panic – especially the lazy ones. When they were told that the Sheikh was particularly interested to know what their average sales were, the lazy servants all breathed a sigh of relief. They thought they still might get away with looking good.

The Sheikh had started to learn about averages on his travels and had become keen to study them further to see how and when they can be useful to us to understand what’s going on. However he also wanted to learn more about situations where average results don’t help us understand the whole picture. What better way to use averages to see if they told him anything about his servants?